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Devils Claw as a Natural Remedy for Gout

By: Betty Roberts

Since thousands of years ago, the natives of south and southeastern Africa have known a little something about medicinally treating inflammation. Named for the appearance of the fruit of its root, Devil's Claw (also referred to as Cat's Claw) is recognized by its hook-like protrusions on pods of the plant.

Extract of Devil's Claw root made its way to Europe in the early 1900s and was used to improve digestion and inflammation, but it is more widely used today as a natural Gout remedy and other joint ailments.

In order to understand how the herb Devil's Claw can be effective as a natural Gout remedy, let's discuss the definition of Gout and how it presents itself in the body.

Gout is a metabolic disorder created when uric acid, which is normally excreted from the body in the urine, fails to metabolize properly and builds up in the blood stream. As it spills into the blood system, crystals are formed that collect in a joint and its surrounding tissues causing intense pain and severe inflammation.

Gout may also be called metabolic arthritis referring to the dysfunctional metabolism of uric acid. The trick is to reduce uric acid levels and combat painful inflammation. Gout's natural remedies and treatments have emerged with Devil's Claw among the top of the heap.

The chemical, principle extracted from the Devil's Claw root, (Harpagoside procumbens) is a Glycoside (sugar derivative) called Harpagoside. This active ingredient contributes the natural anti-inflammatory properties used as a Gout remedy and other painful disorders of the Musculoskeletal system.

While experts have not been able to isolate the exact mechanism of action of Devil's Claw, numerous studies have been conducted with documented success in pain relief of Gout and other ailments. Several of those studies compared Devil's Claw root extract to Cox-2 inhibitors such as Vioxx® in clinical trials. They concluded that the natural supplement appeared to work in the same manner as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDS).

The consistent use of Devil's Claw may reduce the need for other NSAIDS and allow a person suffering from Gout to take lower doses of pain and anti-inflammatory medications, and possibly omit them in the future.

Though Devil's Claw a well-known Gout Remedy is used most commonly for natural treatment of the pain and inflammation of Gout, Rheumatoid Arthritis and muscle pain, it is also used for complaints related to stomach and gall bladder.

Devil's Claw is available for consumption in various forms. The English began brewing it as a bitter tasting tea, which may still hold true that if it tastes bad, it must be good for you! Drinking Devil's Claw as tea remains an option but more commonly today, this Arthritis and Gout remedy is available in oral formulated tablets or capsules, liquid tinctures, as well as a topical ointment for skin irritations.

For natural therapy of Gout and other Musculoskeletal disorders in tablet form, Devil's Claw is recommended for adults 18 and older only.

For dosing, read the label information on the bottle to determine the amount of Harpagoside formulated and adjust your dose to be equivalent to 50-100 mg, taking it two or three times a day.

Higher doses can be taken during the painful acute phase of Gout. Natural remedy such as Devil's Claw can be taken otherwise, i.e., if your beverage of choice is tea, add one teaspoon of dried root of Devil's Claw in 2 cups of boiling water and steep for 20 minutes before straining it then allow it to cool.

You can enjoy the tea 2 or 3 times a day as Gout's natural remedy or to improve indigestion and loss of appetite. As with any medicinal substances you chose to consume, it is important to first consult with your health care provider for help coordinating the use of various natural supplements - especially in conjunction with traditional medications.

Serious potential interactions between the ingredients exist, and there are those among us that should steer clear as some substances can be potentially harmful to our health and well-being.

Devil's Claw is tolerated well by the vast majority of those treating their Gout by natural means, but be sure to talk with your doctor first - especially if you have ulcers, diabetes, high or low blood pressure, plant allergies, heart problems, are pregnant, could become pregnant or if you a nursing mother.

Further discussion needs to occur if you are on medications to treat any of the above ailments or conditions. This is crucial if you are being treated medically for diabetes, heart ailments or taking blood thinners.

Some reports of ringing in the ears and upset stomach have been associated with taking Devil's Claw. Weigh your treatment options with natural supplementation carefully and use these tools to treat your Gout with natural remedies and avoid that painful flare-up!

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